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Copper Rises as China Companies Profits Drop Fuels Stimulus Bets

Copper rose for the second time in three days in New York on speculation that policy makers will take steps to spur growth in China, the world’s largest consumer of the metal, as profits slid for industrial companies.

Profits dropped 6.2 percent from a year earlier in August, falling for a fifth month, China’s statistics bureau said today. China’s stocks jumped the most in three weeks on speculation that the government will announce measures to bolster the equities market.

“Copper is very China-sensitive, and so the speculation that we could see additional stimulus is supportive,” Bill O’Neill, a partner at Logic Advisors in Upper Saddle River, New Jersey, said in a telephone interview. “The rise in China stocks is creating a positive for the market as well.”

Copper futures for December delivery gained 0.9 percent to settle at $3.744 a pound at 1:20 p.m. on the Comex in New York. Prices have risen 8.3 percent this month, heading for the biggest gain since January.

Copper stockpiles monitored by the London Metal Exchange fell to 220,075 metric tons, daily exchange figures showed. Orders to remove the metal from warehouses rose 1.1 percent to 39,875 on bookings in New Orleans, where they have surged more than 12-fold this month.

On the LME, copper for delivery in three months added 0.7 percent to $8,175 a ton ($3.71 a pound).

Aluminum, nickel, tin, lead and zinc also rose in London.

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